Local News

  • Lowe's opens its doors in Bedford

    By July 4, Bedford Lowe's manager Steve Pingley said the store was ready for business. On Monday, it opened its doors.

    "We could have opened last week," Pingley said of getting the store ready.

    The official grand opening of Lowe's of Bedford, located at 1820 E. Lynchburg Salem Turnpike, will be this Thursday, July 10. There will be a "Board Cutting" ceremony at 10 a.m. and shopping spree give-aways throughout the day.

  • Bedford man gambles himself to 90-day jail sentence

    James Keith Norman of Bedford, convicted last September for embezzling money to help pay for a gambling habit, was scheduled to appear in court for sentencing earlier this year.

    Norman, however, didn't appear for his court date and he was picked up in Las Vegas, Nevada, in March, and extradited back to Bedford County.

    Norman appeared in court last Tuesday, July 1, for his sentencing after what Bedford County Circuit Court Judge James Updike called "about as a severe a case of failure to appear" as he had ever seen.

  • City: Power outages on AEP side

    According to Bedford City Manager Charles Kolakowski, the cause of Monday's multiple power outages in Bedford has been tracked down.

    The city lost power numerous times during the late morning and early afternoon hours. The outages disrupted businesses, causing computer systems to go down multiple times.

    Kolakowski said that city electric department crews, working in cooperation with American Electric Power (AEP), traced the problem to control wires on circuit breakers at an AEP substation that feeds power to the city's power grid. AEP has fixed the problem.

  • Motion granted

    A Bedford County man may appear before a Bedford County Circuit Court Jury for as many as seven separate trials, following a motion to have separate trials on the 12 felony charges he is facing.

    Keith Lee Dotson of Otterhill Road, was charged in February with 12 felony sex offenses involving two girls under the age of 13. Dotson faces four counts of forcible sodomy, three counts of aggravated sexual battery and five counts of inanimate object sexual penetration.

  • Boxley quarry yields two-ton stromatolite

    It looks a bit like a flying saucer, but it has nothing to do with outer space. It's a stromatolite and it came out of the Boxley Quarry located off U. S. 460 right on the western edge of Bedford County.

    What's a stromatolite?

    Stromatolites are formed by mats of blue-green algae, also known as cyanobacteria. These microbes have chlorophyll and produce oxygen via as a byproduct of photosynthesis. They also secrete carbonate minerals which, mixed with any sediment that gets mixed up with the bacterial mat, form layers of stone.

  • Long overdue

    A Navy Squadron recently received a presidential unit citation for service in a combat zone — in Vietnam.

    Most units that receive citation are so honored shortly after leaving combat. Robert Gross, a Big Island resident, believes three factors contributed to his unit's delay.

  • Concerts slated for Lake area

    Last year, the board of supervisors rezoned land in Moneta to clear the way for a a proposed amphitheater. Although construction has not yet started, people looking for the quality entertainment that the amphitheater's developer has promised to bring to the area will have something this summer. The developer, Sweetwater Entertainment Group, will bring seven concerts to the Smith Mountain Lake area in August.

  • FEMA study may be in error

    A recent study by the Federal Emergency Management Administration (FEMA), that moved a thousand parcels to a higher flood risk zone, may have been in error.

  • VDGIF urges safety on the Lake

    Local law enforcement officials are hoping boaters at Smith Mountain Lake will play it safe this summer.

    At least for the July 4th weekend, that seems to be happening.

    Only two boating mishaps were reported by the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries over the weekend ? one occurred just after a boating safety event was held for local media representatives and the second in the early morning hours Monday.

    "The weekend was very safe," noted Lt. Tony Fisher of VDGIF. "It was a very safe (weekend) as far as boat wrecks go."

  • Overcoming difficulties

    Rachel Farren Short and Mike Short want to set the record straight.

    Rachel Short is Travis Campbell Farren’s mother and Mike Short is his step-father. The couple said that jumping from an Appalachian Trail foot bridge had nothing to do with Farren’s drowning in the James River last month.

    Travis Farren was not one to complain about his problems. One problem he didn’t complain about was that he suffered from epilepsy. Friends knew it, but it wasn’t something he talked about.